And She Writes
Tuesday Morning Tidy: Fay's Capsule Wardrobe
For this week’s "Tuesday Morning Tidy, I’m sharing my experience creating a Capsule Wardrobe. Since one of our goals with this blog is to offer organizing tips, I wanted to promote the Capsule Wardrobe as a great tool for simplifying and streamlining.
After having my second child, some Pinterest or blog post about Capsule Wardrobes must have caught my attention. I knew that working outside of the home with two young children was going to be challenging, and I needed to simplify as much as possible in order to make things easier. Streamlining my attire seemed like a great first step. Something about getting out the door each morning had me nervous, and rightly so!
I had the added excuse that I hadn’t updated my wardrobe much in a few years, and I was moving into a slightly different position with more responsibility. I was well into my thirties, and it seemed like the right time to start investing in more quality clothing pieces that would last longer and look a bit more professional. My personal style was about as developed as it was ever going to be, and I had finally figured out what worked best for my body and lifestyle.
I started by getting rid of anything I didn’t wear or want to wear anymore, and I was ruthless. I donated anything that didn’t fit my lifestyle or my physique quite right after two children. If shoes hurt my feet (no matter how cute), they were gone! It was a great experience, and I didn’t miss a single item that I banished from my closet.
One of the keys to a Capsule Wardrobe, in my experience, is to stop chasing sales and trends, and instead create a list of wardrobe essentials that will make it easier to get dressed every day. Identifying seasonal color schemes is helpful as well. For example, I focus on black, gray and tan in the winter; and white, navy, red and tan in the summer and spring (with some exceptions as you’ll see below).
Most capsule wardrobes include 25-50 clothing pieces, and a small collection of shoes and accessories. I probably have a more generous shoe collection than most capsule wardrobes, but I have a soft spot for footwear.
The items I do not include in my capsule are athletic items, camis and t-shirts I’d wear for gardening or cleaning. My only rule for athletic and athleisure is that all items need to fit in one drawer of my dresser, and I try to go for higher quality as it lasts so much longer against sweat, washing and Midwest humidity. Since I wear athletic gear a lot during non-work hours, I tend to use items from my work wardrobe for weekend social events as well.
My current spring/summer capsule wardrobe consists of 35 pieces, and I’ve included links to favorite staples where possible.
Tops, including tanks and blouses, a mix of casual and work-appropriate, solids and patterns - 16 (black, gray, navy, green, red and white)
Skirts - 2, one solid pink, one floral blue
Work dress - 1, navy (similar style here)
Casual dresses - 4 (3 blue, 1 black)
Pants - 5 (3 are all-season), in tan, navy, seersucker, black and linen
Shorts - 1, denim
Jeans - 2 (all-season)
Jacket - 2, white and denim
Cardigans - 2, navy and black
Red canvas sneakers
Navy canvas sneakers (2)
Each season, I purchase about four items--usually one or two trendy tops for fun, and two or three replacement pieces for my capsule, depending on wear or style updates. I make a list with any attire needs at the beginning of the season, and I stick to it.
I only added one top to my spring/summer wardrobe due to working remotely (similar top here), and instead focused on updating some of my athletic attire. Had I been going into the office everyday, I would likely have purchased these or these to add to my capsule, as my black flats are several years old and need to be replaced.
I’ll be back with a fall/winter Capsule update in early fall for those that are interested in simplifying and streamlining their own wardrobes. Let me know if you have a favorite piece in your own capsule, or have questions I can answer in that upcoming post. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.